Currently running macOS 11.2.3, and noticed that the system VNC server (enabled in System Preference -> Screen Sharing) always includes the mouse pointer in the video feed sent to the client, causing a shadowed mouse pointer on the client side (As VNC viewers would also render the mouse pointer locally to make a smooth motion). And the behavior is the same no matter if I use the Screen Sharing as the client on another Mac, or some third party VNC viewers on PC. While the Vine VNC Server does not have this issue and works perfectly.

So I wonder if there is a way to stop the system default VNC server from rendering the cursor of the remote machine. I have heard the rumors that the $80 Apple Remote Desktop can somehow configure this, but I haven't yet made the investment. Can someone confirm?

1 Answer 1


It depends on where you take the screenshot.

Even with Apple Remote Desktop if you invoke the screenshot on the local Mac it will include the cursor on the remote instance - which has no clue a screenshot is being taken.
If you invoke it on the remote instance the cursor will hide.

If the key commands are the same for both local & remote, then the local instance will launch in preference to the remote.

  • oh sorry, by "image" I meant to say the video feed of the remote desktop. VNC sends back remote activities as bitmaps and that's why I used "image". But yeah, it is misleading. so there is no screenshot taking involved.
    – hzh
    Mar 30, 2021 at 14:14
  • Ah, OK, then I've no idea, sorry. I can't even imagine a scenario where you don't want to see the cursor on the remote machine. RDC shows the cursor in both Control & Observe modes, so you probably don't want that. I've never used the basic Screen Sharing though, I've used 'Remote Management' for a decade or more & don't have a machine I can quickly toggle between modes to test, sorry.
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 30, 2021 at 14:22

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